Ted Hughes is widely recognised as one of our greatest poets. He is also one of the most controversial. The 'Heathcliff' of poetry who “attracted more scandal than any other literary figure with the exception of Lord Byron” as one contributor notes. Now, for the first time the events of his life and the breadth and influence of his poetry are the focus of a major documentary.
Hughes's significance is incontrovertible, yet so often during his lifetime, attention was focused on the scandalous events in his personal life. Love and work collided with tragic consequences during his marriage to Sylvia Plath.
Featuring the first television interview with Frieda Hughes—poet, artist, and daughter of Ted Hughes and Sylvia Path—alongside a rich seam of testimony from family members, friends, fellow poets and writers, this film will illuminate one of the twentieth century’s most influential cultural figures and show how his compelling life story shaped his vision as a poet.
To create such an intriguing, complete portrait of such a divisive figure requires a special touch. Superb.
Ted Hughes: Stronger than Death
Directed by Richard Curson Smith. UK, 2015, 89 mins